July 3, 2013

AutoCAD Command Line Below the Ribbon…

As an instructor for AutoCAD and Civil 3D classes here at Ideate, I tend to reposition some of the components of my AutoCAD application on screen to make it easier for students to see them.  One of the changes I make most commonly is moving the Command Line from its default location at the bottom of the screen to the top of the screen below the Ribbon.  Unfortunately, AutoCAD does not seem to like this particular spot.

For any of you who have customized your workspace and also chose this location, you may notice that when AutoCAD starts up, it repositions the Command Line and Ribbon so they are side by side rather than stacked with the Ribbon above as you saved it with the Workspace.

Here’s what was Saved with the Workspace: Command Line below the Ribbon

When AutoCAD is launched from scratch, the side by side version of the Ribbon and Command Line appears instead.

Default Launch: Command Line on the side of the Ribbon

Unfortunately, this is an issue that has been occurring with the past releases of AutoCAD, and continues with the 2014 version. Luckily, there’s a relatively quick and easy workaround that can move the Command Line back to where it should be.

After a few years of manually moving the Command Line back to below the Ribbon (and finding out that it prefers to be stacked above rather than below), I noticed that switching to a different workspace, then switching it back to my custom workspace also did the trick. If done manually, this takes a few seconds as you will need to wait for the alternate workspace to load, and then switch back. If a simple script is used, the process is done automatically and occurs much faster.

The script is very basic (only seven lines total) and can be written in any basic text editor application. All it does is use the WORKSPACE command to set the default Civil 3D workspace current, then use the same command again to switch back to the custom workspace, in this case named TECH SUPPORT. A simple “drag and drop” process with the script file runs it automatically in AutoCAD, and you won’t have to wait for the alternate workspace to load as you would if done manually from the Workspace dropdown.

Here’s a screenshot of the content of the script (.SCR) file.

And here’s a recording of the script in action.


If you’ve been trying to customize the Command Line to a spot below the Ribbon and have run into the same problem, here’s a quick and easy script-based workaround to use.

Matt Miyamoto, P.E.
Ideate AEC Application Specialist

Matt is a licensed Civil Engineer in the state of Hawaii. Matt obtained a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and has 7 years of private sector design experience which he applies in his role as an application specialist with Ideate, Inc. His project experience includes residential and commercial site development, private and public sewer, water and drainage systems, harbors improvements, and roadway improvements. While in Hawaii, Matt was involved in multidisciplinary projects for City and County agencies, State Departments, the Army COE and private developers. @MattM_PE

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